Universities

A Breakdown of LSU’s Deferred Maintenance Needs Compared to Eight Louisiana Universities | News

Note: Louisiana lawmakers will decide what to do with a large excess of cash available to the state during the next legislative session in March. Prior to the session, The Reveille dedicates a series of stories to LSU’s infrastructure. It is the fifth story in the ongoing series.

Whichever way you slice it, LSU has some of the largest deferred maintenance needs in Louisiana.

LSU is the largest university in the state, in terms of campus size and student population, so direct comparisons of total maintenance backlog costs between LSU and smaller schools in Louisiana do not paint a picture. full.

With more than 35,000 students, LSU has nearly three times as many students as the second-largest school, Louisiana Tech, which has more than 12,000 students.

LSU also has a much larger campus than most schools, totaling over 15 million square feet. More space means more things to break. Most public universities in Louisiana have less than 4 million square feet of floor space, with several under 1 million.

There are 17 public universities in Louisiana, including eight from which Reveille was able to collect data. The school’s deferred maintenance needs are broken down into cost per student and cost per square foot of each campus. LSU always comes out with the most pressing needs.

break it down











Student

Louisiana State University

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $636,808,794

  • Cost per square foot: $42

  • Cost per student: $18,089

Southeastern Louisiana University

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $63,667,000

  • Cost per square foot: $20

  • Cost per student: $14,029

Louisiana State University Shreveport

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $18,000,000

  • Cost per square foot: $26

  • Cost per student: $2,113

Northwestern State University

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $29,758,000

  • Cost per square foot: $36

  • Cost per student: $3,305

University of New Orleans

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $54,664,350

  • Cost per square foot: $17

  • Cost per student: $7,928

Nicholls State University

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $52,794,836

  • Cost per square foot: $31

  • Cost per student: $9,304

Grambling State University

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $39,875,000

  • Cost per square foot: $19

  • Cost per student: $7,332

Louisiana Technology

  • Total deferred maintenance requirements: $50,000,000

  • Cost per square foot: $15

  • Cost per student: $4,027

To construct

While LSU would need $640 million to clear its deferred maintenance backlog, there are a few other factors to consider.

The first is that the total increases every year. Roger Husser, assistant vice president for planning, design and construction, said the total increases by about $20 million each year.

Another factor is that the deferred maintenance backlog is not meant to be eliminated. Some buildings that need maintenance will eventually be demolished. Others will eventually be replaced.

The LSU Library currently needs more than $30 million in deferred maintenance, but it will likely be torn down and replaced before most of those needs are met.

Of course, a new library will cost a lot more than $30 million, but that money will most likely come from separate funding sources.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards presented his budget proposal on January 24. It included a $108 million proposal for deferred maintenance. While that money would go to deferred maintenance projects across the state, not just those on college campuses, Administrative Commissioner Jay Dardenne said a significant portion of that money would likely go to college facilities. Higher Education.

That assumes the $108 million is approved by the Republican-controlled legislature, which has the final say on the budget.

Dardenne gave more details about Edwards’ budget to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee on Jan. 25. He said the committee previously declined to use these one-time funds for deferred maintenance, but urges them to approve it this time.

“Every time we fail to meet a deferred maintenance obligation, it only increases the price we’re going to pay down the line,” Dardenne said.

Even if the legislature doesn’t approve the full $108 million, schools are likely to get state funds for deferred maintenance. LSU received $5 million last year.

That $5 million, a small drop in LSU’s needs, paid for 12 of the more than 7,000 projects on the deferred maintenance list, including replacing the Nicholson Hall roof, relining the LSU Library roof, and payment for part of the studio arts building. renovations

It should be noted that despite the relining of the library’s roof, which will cost $450,000, other roof repairs, costing $850,000, remain on the university’s list of deferred maintenance priorities. In addition to this, 49 other library-related projects require special attention.

It remains to be seen how much LSU will receive this year and what that money will go to.